On the 100th anniversary of the premiere of Béla Bartók’s Bluebeard’s Castle, the Hungarian State Opera stages a brand new version by Kasper Holten as well as showcases legendary productions paired with contemporary companion pieces between 24 May and 5 June 2018.
The conception of Béla Bartók’s first and only one-act opera was an arduous process.
It spent seven years in the drawer of his desk after the competition it was written for had ended, and it was exactly a hundred years ago when it was finally premiered at the Opera House.
But it was only the 1936 revival that brought real success to the unique and unrepeatable masterpiece, which has been performed around the world starting in the second half of the 20th century. The early literal readings and interpretations as a mystery play were soon replaced by the projection of the internal message: two people in love struggling with each other and their eventual disappointment. This perspective makes Bluebeard’s Castle one of the most important works to focus on psychology, and one that can be performed anywhere – nowadays, fortunately, mainly in Hungarian.
During the Bluebeard100 programme series adudiences can see this opera in three different versions: on 24 May, for the 100th anniversary of its premiere, a new version is staged by internationally acclaimed director Kasper Holten.
On 4 & 5 June, two legendary productions are revived. Bartók’s piece is paired with contemporary companion pieces every night.
24, 28, 29 May 2018
Péter Eötvös: Senza sangue – concert performance; for the first time at the Opera
Béla Bartók: Bluebeard’s Castle – new production directed by Kasper Holten
Conductor: Péter Eötvös
4 June 2018
Iván Madarász: Prologue – concert version; world premiere
Béla Bartók: Bluebeard’s Castle – directed by Viktor Nagy
Conductor: Ádám Medveczky
5 June 2018
Gergely Vajda: Barbie Blue – concert performance; for the first time at the Opera
Béla Bartók: Bluebeard’s Castle – directed by Miklós Szinetár
Conductor: Gergely Vajda
Source: Hungarian State Opera